# Questions tagged [gyroscopes]

A spinning wheel or disc in which the axis of rotation is free to assume any orientation by itself. When rotating, the orientation of this axis is unaffected by tilting or rotation of the mounting, according to the conservation of angular momentum. These devices are used for measuring or maintaining orientation and angular velocity.

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### How do we stabilise satellites so precisely?

Look at the Hubble Ultra Deep Field photo. The stars in it are on the order of 1 arcsecond across. To an order of magnitude, this is $10^{-6}$ radians in a $10\text m$ telescope which was held steady ...
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### Why don't spinning tops fall over?

One topic which was covered in university, but which I never understood, is how a spinning top "magically" resists the force of gravity. The conservation of energy explanations make sense, but I don't ...
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### Can a car steer on a frictionless surface?

Do the front tires of a car act like gyroscopes, such that a car could steer on a frictionless surface?
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### Why does a spinning top get back upright when knocked?

I have observed that, a spinning top, when toppled by knocking it with finger, becomes almost upright again (with negligible precessional motion), instead of undergoing precession while being heavily ...
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### Why are spacecraft made to "spin" after launch?

At some point after launch, usually just before or after separation from the last booster stage, spacecraft are often made to "spin" (about the axis of their trajectory)? See e.g this You Tube video. ...
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### What determines the direction of precession of a gyroscope?

I understand how torque mathematically causes a change to the direction of angular momentum, thus precessing the gyroscope. However, the direction, either clockwise or counterclockwise, of this ...
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### How do you explain spinning tops to a nine year old?

Why don't spinning tops fall over? (The young scientist version) My nine year old son asked me this very question when playing with his "Battle Strikers" set. Having studied Physics myself, I am very ...
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### What makes a wrist-energized gyroscope rotate faster?

I'm considering a wrist-energized gyroscope, shown below (after my daughter let it fall and it broke open). That one was sold as Roller Ball, but variants are known as Powerball, DynaBee, Dynaball, ...
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### Would a double gyroscope still have gyroscopic properties?

Imagine you have a gyroscope that has two spinning parts, one on top of the other. When you pull the string, the two halves spin in opposite directions. Would this cancel out the gyroscopic properties,...
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### What's the deal with the gyroscope?

In this article ("The problem with physics", Tony Rothman, ABC science) the author says in the 5$^\textrm{th}$ paragraph: For example, one needs only first-semester equations to describe reasonably ...
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### Magnet gyroscopic force spin

I was wondering whether a magnet exerts any measurable gyroscopic effects. I understand that magnetism is caused by alignment of spins of electrons which have angular momentum. (I realise that that ...
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### how can you keep a gyroscope turning?

I'm trying to understand how do gyroscopes and cmgs used for navigating keep on spinning even though there's friction. Any engine/pushing mechanism I can think of will restrict the gyro's rotor to a ...
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### Gimbal Lock: why is it a problem?

I was watching the video Gimble Lock - Explained, by videodumper, about the gimbal lock problem. I understood that during rotations it could happen that one DOF disappear. Looking at the middle part ...
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### Defy gravity torques with gyroscopes?

Context On the following drawing, a platform is hung from the ceiling not exactly from its centre of gravity. Because of this it can't sustain an arbitrary orientation for long; I want to increase ...
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### Dynamics of pendulum coupled to a gyroscope [closed]

We know the dynamics of a pendulum and we know the dynamics of a gyroscope. I put together the following I diagram below. The interesting thing as that the system has a beat frequency where the ...
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### Will a precessing spinning wheel fall down if there is no friction at all?

If there where no friction at all, would a spinning wheel held up by one end of the axis spin precess forever without falling down? I just asked another question about the same problem: Direction ...
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### Anti-gravity wheel?

So I was just watching some YouTube videos on a spinning wheel that seemed to "defy" gravity. The creator made two videos on it, the first showing the wheel, and the second with an attempt ...
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### Direction of torque precession of a spinning wheel

Consider a spinning wheel, which is held up by one end of it's axis like this: To explain why the change of angular momentum is directed as shown in the figure above, one usually says that there is ...
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### Is the torque on a gyroscope a conventional virtual force perpendicular to rotation?

So I am having some difficulty understanding gyroscopic precession. I understand that mathematically by convention torque is perpendicular to the force and so is angular momentum but surely that force ...
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### How does a gyrocompass in a moving craft sense the Earth's rotation?

Various descriptions of gyrocompasses that I can find (such as the Wikipedia article) claim that the compass will seek to align itself with the earth's rotational axis. I think I can understand how ...
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### Are gyroscopes the only way to maintain the orientation?

Gyroscope is quite popular, one can even find it in iphone etc. But, is such Gyroscope the only way? are there any other ways to build machine that to measure or maintain the orientation?
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